A Blog by John Bossong

4 Things You Can Do To Be A Better Leader and The Basket

I read a great analogy the other day about how a basket is a great example of leading, alignment and unity.  You will need to read on to find out why.

The New Year will bring many challenges, surprises and victories for you.  Not necessarily in that order.   Here are 4 things you can do to improve as a leader next year.

As author John C. Maxwell states, “everything rises and falls with leadership”.

Leadership is that important.  These 4 things don’t guarantee success, but they will give you something to think about.


1. Get Rid Of

  1. Negative influences – misery loves company – don’t get caught up in the gossip and complaining.
  2. Negative people.
  3. All the noise – simplify and focus.
  4. Learn to let go – get uncomfortable – give something up to pursue something else that will help you reach your potential.
  5. Drop whatever you are not good at – delegate it – focus on what you do best.

2. Define Success

  1. Define your success – don’t let someone else do it for you.
  2. Decide what you want and figure out a way to make it happen.
  3. Don’t just dream about something – take action and do something – start.
  4. Don’t let fear keep you from what you want.
  5. Don’t refuse to change – if nothing changes then nothing changes.
  6. Know your personal and organizational “why” – do they align?

3. Improve Your Current Skills

  1. Leaders are readers – read often from a variety of sources.
  2. Understand that the skills that got you where you are now most likely won’t get you where you want to go.
  3. Don’t let your success stop your growth – improve your leadership capacity. John Maxwell calls this the Law of the Lid.
  4. Find a mentor or mentor someone else.
  5. Your personal development is your best job security.
  6. Learn to write and communicate.
  7. Develop a desire to get better – never settle for the status quo.

4. Give More Than You Get

  1. Be a servant leader – wash the feet of your team.
  2. Be hands on – get out of the office and lead.
  3. Create a giving and learning culture where you work.
  4. Model the values and principles of the organization.
  5. Give your team your time and undivided attention.
  6. Give your team the ability to make decisions and fail.
  7. Give them the opportunity to delay immediate short term gratification for long term growth.

Now, on to the basket. I read this story earlier in the week and thought it was great. Below is a summary.

The Basket

Place a stick by itself and it can’t really do anything.  Put a bunch of sticks on the ground side by side, individually they are strong but still they can’t achieve much.

Now, wrap the sticks together strategically, intertwining their strengths and unifying them  – and you have a basket that holds exponentially more than the individual sticks ever could by themselves.  Output capabilities have also increased exponentially.  The sticks are now useful and have a purpose.

Go lead and build your basket.

What will you do this year to strengthen your leadership basket? What would you add to the lists? 


  1. Equilla Miller says:

    Another great article. Very motivational and applicable. I’m going to share it with my Ministry Leader Group. Blessings

    • Equilla – thanks for the comment. Have a great, safe New Year and an awesome 2013. God Bless,


      • Джон ! Спасибо! Мое счастливое число четыре! Обязательно получится! :-)
        1. Избавляться от…. ; Хочу изменить ситуацию, избавиться от одиночества.
        2. Определить успех….; Знаю свою реальность и готова к пониманию исправлять ситуацию – прекратить мечтать, продолжить работать над собою, разбираться в новом ,прочитанном и применять на практике.
        3. Улучшение Ваши текущие навыки…; Мое личное развитие – приобрести Друга – консультанта! Помощь которого даст путь , к знанию и успеху, заработку, возможно, в моем несовершенном творчестве!
        4. Дать больше, чем вы получаете….; Моя жизнь, всегда, заключалась в передаче ценности моего я, в разумном подчинении , учебе, работе в команде.
        Возможность отложить сиюминутное удовольствие термин для долгосрочного роста!… К сожалению, моё постоянное состояние! Нет РЕЗУЛЬТАТА!
        - КОРЗИНА…; Не поняла вопрос, значение!?
        Джон! Мой ответ; – Успех и реализация четырех пунктов…. в 2013 г.!
        Скопирую, сохраню!
        Желаю вам и вашей семьи много счастливых дней в новом году! Спасибо Алла.
        ( лично , не для печати )

  2. An inspirational list. If we can do even half of these consistently..we would all be off to a good start to 2013. Happy New Year.

  3. Great stuff – I especially like, and endorse, the concept of washing the feet of your team. Humility id an under-rated quality.

    Many thanks.

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